Saturday, April 4, 2015
The Core of Misogyny
“Male gender supremacy is a moral evil that patriarchal Christianity has helped to perpetuate by legitimating male control as divinely sanctioned, supposedly beneficial for all parties.
Christian feminists insist that patriarchal Christianity’s denial of women’s humanity, its disrespect for their human rights, and its idealizing of women’s powerlessness is far from accidental. This system of male control naturalizes dominant-subordinate relationships for the purpose of legitimating male supremacy. Its continuation depends, to a great extent, on the compliance of women and men to its norms and ideological assumptions about gender. When gender conformity and compliance to racist patriarchal norms break down, patriarchy turns violent, especially when women display autonomous self-direction and “when we women live and act as full and adequate persons in our own right.” As [Beverly] Harrison explains: It is never the mere presence of a women nor the image of women, nor fear of ‘femininity,’ that is the heart of misogyny. The core of misogyny, which has yet to be broken or even touched, is the reaction that occurs when women’s concrete power is manifest.” – Marvin M. Ellison, What Men Owe to Women